If you’re in the throes of a hot flash, your instinct may be to grab anything you can reach for as a condom substitute. But some household items can contain allergens, deteriorate your skin, or interfere with condom barriers.
Polyurethane condoms are made of thin plastic instead of latex and offer similar levels of pregnancy and STI prevention. These can also be worn by women.
Shoe polish is a mix of dyes, naphtha, and turpentine that protects leather shoes from water, allows them to clean easily, and covers scuff marks. It can be bought in small tins that make it easy to carry around.
Many shoe manufacturers sell a liquid version that comes in a squeezable plastic bottle with a small sponge applicator. It typically has a lower wax content than bottled polish and is easier to apply.
However, as Gersh notes, “these don’t protect against pregnancy if used on the penis during manual intercourse.” In fact, these makeshift condoms can actually cause harm if used incorrectly.
Sweet almond oil has a sexy smell and is safe for oral, vaginal, and anal sex. It also moisturizes, and is thin enough to not leave oily residue on the skin or sex toys. However, it is not compatible with latex condoms, and some people are allergic to nuts.
Coconut oil is another popular natural lubricant. It has an exotic scent, and can be used for massages as well. But it’s not compatible with latex condoms, as it can damage them. You can also try aloe vera, which is a natural plant-based lubricant that’s safe for use with condoms and sex toys.
Vitamin E Oil
A safe and natural lubricant for penetrative sex, vitamin E oil is a great choice as long as you use it sparingly. However, it can be absorbed through the skin and cause irritation in sensitive areas. Make sure you choose a pure form without additives.
Using lube not only increases pleasure but can also encourage safer sex by reducing friction that can cause condoms to break. However, some lubes can actually degrade latex and polyisoprene condoms and leave you vulnerable to STI transmission or unintended pregnancy.
You can try using a cornstarch lube, which is easy to find at most pharmacies. Look for a vegan product that doesn’t contain any perfumes, herbal extracts or added spermicide.
Avocado oil is a natural lubricant that is a good option for oral and vaginal sex. However, it can be a problem when used with condoms because it will degrade latex and put you at risk of STIs or pregnancy.
Coconut oil is another natural lubricant that can be safely used for anal and vaginal sex. Just make sure you use virgin or extra-virgin coconut oil to avoid additives. You can also try aloe vera as a lubricant, but be aware that it’s not a good choice for latex condoms and can stain fabrics. If you want a lubricant that will work with condoms, look for a water-based lubricant instead.
Vegetable oil is a common household product, used to prepare meals or make candles. But it’s also a great lubricant!
It’s not recommended to use vegetable oil as a lubricant for anal or vaginal sex because it’s difficult to wash off, and it can cause irritation. It also clogs pores and can lead to infections.
It’s not safe to use vegetable oil with latex condoms or dental dams, because it can damage them and increase the risk of an STI. Instead, opt for an oil-free lube like Aloe Vera or a safe commercial lubricant. These last longer and are safe for all types of condoms.
Coconut oil is a great natural lubricant, gliding on the skin smoothly and making oral sex a dream. It’s also less messy than many other plant-based lubricants. And it’s rare to have an allergic reaction to it, unlike some other personal lubricants.
But it’s important to note that coconut oil can degrade latex condoms, so it shouldn’t be used with them. And it can also disrupt your vagina’s pH balance, which could lead to a yeast infection. So it’s best to stick with water or silicone-based lubes if you’re using a condom. And always do a patch test before you use any lubricant.
Vaseline is a petroleum jelly product that can be used to soothe dry skin. However, it is not safe to use as a condom lubricant. Like other oil-based lubes, it can weaken latex condoms and cause them to break during sex. It also can trap bacteria and lead to infections. It can also leave greasy stains on sheets and clothing.
Vaseline can also degrade the material in polyurethane and polyisoprene condoms. It is not recommended to use it with pegging toys or anal sex toys either, as this can irritate the rectal area and increase the risk of an infection.
Gelatin is fat- and carb-free, so it’s a great condom alternative. It can also be a useful substitute for an ice pack for burns and bruises.
The glycine in gelatin can reduce the symptoms of schizophrenia and obsessive-compulsive disorder. Moreover, it has been shown to increase memory and focus.
Personal lubricant can make sex more pleasurable for both partners, and some have extra features that can make it feel like a condom isn’t even there. But be careful with lubricants: some can be harmful and cause STIs if they slip off during sex. And it’s important to remember that condoms should never be flushed down the toilet, as they can cause devastating consequences for sewage systems and waterways.
Baking soda—also known as bicarbonate of soda—is a natural, safe and cheap household product that can be used as a condom alternative. It’s important to note that baking soda won’t protect against pregnancy, and using it as a makeshift condom may result in burning or irritation.
To use baking soda as a lubricant, mix equal parts water and 3 teaspoons of baking soda. Stir the mixture until it bubbles, and then apply it to the penis before sexual activity. This lubricant is also compatible with latex condoms. However, it is recommended to only use this lubricant if you are confident in your partner’s ability to perform safe sex.